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Tag: Cary Condotta


Republicans wary of I-502 marijuana changes

It takes two-thirds supermajorities in the Legislature to change a voter initiative in its first two years, so proposed changes to pot-legalizing Initiative 502 need the support of both political parties.

And a key House Republican said today his caucus has a philosophical opposition to changing initiatives right away and that, more specifically, I-502 was well-written.

Rep. Cary Condotta, R-East Wenatchee, is the ranking member of the committee dealing with marijuana issues. He’s in no hurry to change the system that has yet to start operating. “Let’s get it set up, see what we’ve got,” he said.

Condotta did acknowledge that Republicans

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Republicans lose procedural showdown on worker’s comp

Republicans are disappointed, conservative Democrats are steaming and prospects for a deal on worker’s compensation have dimmed further — all because of the failure today of a procedural vote.

A moment’s pause here for the substance of the debate: SB 5566 has passed the Senate and would allow what opponents in labor call “compromise and release” or what supporters in business call “voluntary settlements.” Whatever the name, they would save money for the state’s worker’s-comp system by allowing injured workers and their employers to resolve their claims with lump-sum settlements.

The debate is over whether workers would be pressured into settlements, but that substance didn’t come up for debate on the House floor today. Instead Republicans, frustrated that Labor Committee Chairman Mike Sells refuses to allow a vote on the bill, made a procedural motion that would have allowed them to pull the bill directly to the floor. Some are calling it the “nuclear option.”

The motion failed on a nearly party-line vote, 54-43. Read more »


Hearing shows widespread support for Rep. Hunt’s spirits sampling bill and Rep. Kenney’s beer and wine tasting in farmers markets

From wine growers to farmers market leaders to state representatives, speakers at a House committee hearing to expand sampling of alcoholic drinks in Washington were generally supportive of the idea.

The House Committee on State Government and Tribal Affairs on Wednesday heard widespread positive testimony on two bills, HB 1202 and HB 1172, that would set up pilot projects to try spirits sampling at liquor stores and beer and wine sampling at farmers markets.

If passed, the bills would expand upon a 2010 measure that allows grocery stores to get a license from the liquor control board to provide on-premises beer and wine samples, a program that liquor board representatives say has been largely successful.

Supporters of the bills, sponsored by Rep. Sam Hunt and Rep. Phyllis Kenney, argued that most states allow sampling and the restrictions included in the bills would make sure it happened in a careful, controlled way.

“Wines have been kind of a godsend for our operation—it has allowed us to keep our people employed, pay mortgages, etc.,” said Wade Bennett, a farmer and wine maker who testified at the hearing in support of the farmers market bill.

“We think it’s very important to our prosperity,” he said of the bill.

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How many votes did your state lawmaker miss?

You can find out below, courtesy of a count by Washington Votes. But the more interesting part of the report out today might be the excuses lawmakers gave for missing votes.

Some are pretty compelling: illnesses, surgeries, disabilities. Others, not so much. Read them below, too.

Living near Olympia didn’t help attendance records. Four of the six most frequently absent House members were from the South Sound. Led by Rep. Christopher Hurst of Enumclaw (163 missed votes), whose wife has been recovering from brain surgery, the list also includes Reps. Geoff Simpson of Covington (91), Cary Condotta of Wenatchee (80), Reuven Carlyle of Seattle (75), Jeannie Darneille of Tacoma (67) and Dennis Flannigan of Tacoma (67).

The most frequently absent senator was Sen. Bob McCaslin of Spokane Valley (491), who was hospitalized during session, followed by Sens. Darlene Fairley of Lake Forest Park (96), Janéa Holmquist of Moses Lake (85), Cheryl Pflug of Maple Valley (78) and Dale Brandland of Bellingham (69).

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